After years of waiting for a promised new prison, officials in Fayette County, Pa., were stunned last week when Gov. Tom Corbett’s administration canceled the $200 million project. German Township Supervisor Dan Shimshock said he wasn’t even notified; he learned of the news from a reporter, says the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.
The news came out when a letter to executives of the firms selected to build the prison was posted on the Department of General Services website. The state Department of Corrections said the new prison was not “absolutely needed” because other state prisons are already under-used. The news comes as a hard blow to the German Township area, a once-booming coal district that’s now riddled with boarded storefronts, and where one in five residents live below the poverty level.